1. Overview

Personal and stakeholder pensions are private pensions that you arrange yourself. Some employers offer them as workplace pensions.

They’ll usually give you a pension pot that’s based on how much was paid in. This is called a defined contribution pension scheme.

You may want a personal or stakeholder pension:

  • to save money for retirement on top of your workplace pension
  • because you’re self-employed and don’t have a workplace pension
  • because you aren’t working but can afford to pay into a pension

You usually get tax relief on money you pay into a pension.

Check that your pension scheme is registered with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for tax relief.

Personal pension providers must also be registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and stakeholder pensions with the Pensions Regulator.

You can get help with choosing the right pension scheme.

When you get money from your pension

Most pension schemes set an age when you can start taking money from your pension pot, usually between 60 and 65. Sometimes this can be earlier but it’s not normally before 55.

Contact your pension provider when you want to take your pension.